The Official Website of the Office of His Eminence Al-Sayyid Ali Al-Husseini Al-Sistani

Books » Islamic Laws



Ruling 929. One must perform prayers with the intention of qurbah, i.e. in humility and obedience to the Lord of the worlds. It is not necessary for him to make the intention pass through his heart or, for example, to say ‘I am performing four rakʿahs of the ẓuhr prayer qurbatan ilal lāh [to attain proximity to Allah]’.

Ruling 930. If a person makes the intention in ẓuhr or ʿaṣr prayers that ‘I am performing a four rakʿah prayer’ but does not specify if it is the ẓuhr or ʿaṣr prayer, his prayer is invalid. However, it is sufficient if he specifies the ẓuhr prayer as the first prayer and the ʿaṣr prayer as the second prayer. With regard to someone for whom it is obligatory, for example, to make up a ẓuhr prayer, if he wants to make up that prayer or perform the ẓuhr prayer within the prescribed time for ẓuhr prayers, he must specify in his intention which prayer he is performing.

Ruling 931. One must maintain the intention from the beginning of the prayer until its end; therefore, if during the prayer he becomes unmindful to the extent that were he to be asked ‘What are you doing?’ he would not know what to reply, his prayer would be invalid.

Ruling 932. One must only perform prayers in humility to the Lord of the worlds; therefore, if one performs prayers ostentatiously – i.e. to show off to people – his prayer is invalid, irrespective of whether he does so solely for people or partly for Allah the Exalted and partly for people.

Ruling 933. If someone performs part of the prayer for other than Allah the Exalted – irrespective of whether that part is an obligatory one, such as the recitation of Sūrat al-Ḥamd, or a recommended one, such as qunūt – and if that intention permeates the entire prayer – for example, his ostentatious intention in the performance of an act is to show off his prayer – or, if to redress that part it would mean adding an act that invalidates the prayer [for example, to redress the rukūʿ that he performed ostentatiously, he would need to perform another rukūʿ, which would invalidate the prayer, as mentioned in Ruling 928], then in these cases, his prayer is invalid. If one performs prayers for Allah the Exalted but to show off to people he performs it in a specific place such as a mosque, or at a particular time such as at the start of its prescribed time, or in a particular manner such as in congregation, then his prayer is invalid in these cases as well.
العربية فارسی اردو English Azərbaycan Türkçe Français